The Canadian Press The Hockey Writers
Rust, Johnson Help Pittsburgh Rally Past Bruins 4-3
PITTSBURGH — Jack Johnson and Bryan Rust scored third-period goals as the Pittsburgh Penguins rallied to defeat the Boston Bruins 4-3 on Sunday.
Pittsburgh trailed 3-0 in the first period before scoring four unanswered goals. Johnson scored a short-handed goal and Rust added his 21st of the season.
Dominik Simon and Teddy Blueger also scored for the Penguins, who have won six of their last seven games and 10 of their last 13.
Sidney Crosby has points in four straight games since returning from core muscle surgery. Crosby, who had two assists on Sunday, has three goals and eight points after missing the previous 28 games.
Matt Murray rebounded from a shaky start to make 34 saves for Pittsburgh. Murray, who won his fifth straight game, made consecutive starts for the first time since November.
David Pastrnak scored his 37th goal, and Patrice Bergeron scored his 21st and Anders Bjork his eighth for Boston. The Bruins have 13 wins in their last 20 games against the Penguins, but they’re winless in their last six visits to Pittsburgh.
Pastrnak has 11 goals and 24 points in his last 17 games. He’s the first Bruins player with 70 points in 50 or fewer games since Cam Neely and Adam Oates in 1993-94.
It was just the second time since 2010-11 that the Bruins lost in regulation after leading by three or more goals. Boston was 200-1-6 in that scenario, with the lone loss coming April 4, 2011, when the Bruins scored the first three goals before the New York Rangers scored the next five unanswered.
Jaroslav Halak made 18 saves for the Bruins.
Johnson tied the game at 3 with a short-handed goal 1:41 into the third. He beat Halak to the blocker side with a slap shot from the top of the circle.
Rust gave Pittsburgh a 4-3 lead when he scored at 12:35 of the third. Evgeni Malkin’s pass from behind the net set up Rust in the slot.
The two teams met for the second time in four days. The Bruins won the first two games of the season series, both in Boston. Pittsburgh scored 24 seconds into the game on Thursday, but the Bruins responded with four straight goals.
Boston scored twice in the first 2:02 on Sunday.
Bergeron scored 11 seconds into the game, 3 seconds shy of the fastest goal to open a regular-season game by a Bruins player. Bjork netted the Bruins’ second goal when he beat Murray with a glove-side wrist shot from the slot.
Pastrnak gave the Bruins a 3-0 lead at 15:07.
Simon got one back for Pittsburgh 1:37 after Boston’s third goal. Blueger cut the Bruins’ lead to 3-2 when he scored 33 seconds into the second. Crosby set up the Penguins’ second goal with a between-the-legs pass from behind the net to Blueger, who converted in front.
Boston C David Krejci missed his second straight game with an upper-body injury … Bruins F David Backes cleared waivers on Saturday. Boston plans to assign him to Providence of the AHL. … Crosby has points in seven straight home games against Boston, including five multi-point efforts. … Sunday’s game was Pittsburgh’s 600th consecutive home sellout, a streak that includes regular-season and playoff games and spans to Feb. 14, 2007.
Bruins: Host Vegas on Tuesday.
Penguins: Visit Philadelphia on Tuesday.
More AP NHL: https://apnews.com/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
Dan Scifo, The Associated Press
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